An agreement that a non-attorney would solicit clients for an attorney, in violation of s. 757.295, in exchange for payment of 25 percent of the attorney's fee, in violation of this section, was unenforceable on grounds of unjust enrichment or restitution. Abbott v. Marker, 2006 WI App 174
, 295 Wis. 2d 636
, 722 N.W.2d 162
Court reporter not to take statements of injured persons.
No court reporter for any court of record in the state of Wisconsin or any of his or her assistants may be employed by any person or corporation to take the statement of any injured or other person in any way relating to the manner in which the person was injured or killed or the extent of personal injuries, and any court reporter or assistant violating this section shall be removed and shall not be permitted to testify in any court concerning any such statement taken in violation of this section. The taking, transcribing or reporting testimony given by deposition or otherwise according to law, is not prohibited by this section.
History: 1977 c. 187
; Stats. 1977 s. 757.46; Sup. Ct. Order No. 19-01
, 2019 WI 44, 386 Wis. 2d xvii.
Taxes of this state enforced in other states. 757.47(1)(1)
The courts of this state shall recognize and enforce the liability for taxes lawfully imposed by the laws of any other state which extends a like comity in respect of the liability for taxes lawfully imposed by the laws of this state, and the officials of such other state are authorized to bring action in the courts of this state for the collection of such taxes. The certificate of the secretary of state of such other state that such officials have the authority to collect the taxes sought to be collected by such action shall be conclusive proof of that authority.
The attorney general is empowered to bring action in the courts of other states to collect taxes legally due the state.
The term “taxes" as herein employed shall include:
Any and all tax assessments lawfully made whether they be based upon a return or other disclosure of the taxpayer, upon the information and belief of the taxing authority, or otherwise.
Any and all penalties lawfully imposed pursuant to a taxing statute.
Interest charges lawfully added to the tax liability which constitutes the subject of the action.
History: 1977 c. 187
; Stats. 1977 s. 757.47.
Guardian ad litem must be an attorney. 757.48(1)(a)
Except as provided in s. 879.23 (4)
, in all matters in which a guardian ad litem is appointed by the court, the guardian ad litem shall be an attorney admitted to practice in this state. In order to be appointed as a guardian ad litem under s. 767.407
, an attorney shall have completed 3 hours of approved continuing legal education that relates to the functions and duties of a guardian ad litem under ch. 767
and that includes training on the dynamics of domestic violence and the effects of domestic violence on victims of domestic violence and on children. In order to be appointed as a guardian ad litem under s. 54.40 (1)
, an attorney shall have complied with SCR chapter 36
The guardian ad litem shall be allowed reasonable compensation for his or her services such as is customarily charged by attorneys in this state for comparable services. If the court orders a county to pay the compensation of the guardian ad litem, the amount ordered may not exceed the compensation paid to private attorneys under s. 977.08 (4m) (b)
. If the attorney of record is also the guardian ad litem, the attorney shall be entitled only to attorney fees and shall receive no compensation for services as guardian ad litem.
If the statutes do not specify how the fee of the guardian ad litem is paid, the ward shall pay such fee. The court may, however, in cases involving real or personal property in which the ward claims or may have a right or interest, order payment out of such property.
No guardian ad litem may be permitted to receive any assets or income of his or her ward, nor may any bond be required of a guardian ad litem, but all assets or income of the ward may be paid or delivered to the ward's guardian of the estate, subject to the exceptions of s. 54.12
No person shall be appointed guardian ad litem for a plaintiff without the written consent of the person appointed.
See s. 879.23 (4)
for parent as guardian in probate matters.
See SCR 35.015
for education requirements.
Comment of Judicial Council, 1971: A guardian ad litem shall: (1) Be an attorney and be allowed reasonable compensation as is customarily charged by attorneys for comparable services. If the attorney of record is also the guardian ad litem, only one fee is allowed. (2) Be compensated by the ward or out of the ward's property. (3) Not be permitted to receive any money or property of the ward. (4) Not be appointed for a plaintiff without the appointed person's consent. Subsection (1) is in present law; subs. (3) and (4) are the same as present law. [Re Order effective July 1, 1971]
Sub. (1) (a) is void as an unconstitutional violation of the separation of powers. It interferes with the judiciary's exclusive authority to regulate the practice of law. Fiedler v. Wisconsin Senate, 155 Wis. 2d 94
, 454 N.W.2d 770
The courts' power to appropriate compensation for court-appointed counsel is necessary for the effective operation of the judicial system. In ordering compensation for court ordered attorneys, a court should abide by the s. 977.08 (4m) rate when it can retain qualified and effective counsel at that rate, but should order compensation at the rate under SCR 81.01
or 81.02 or a higher rate when necessary to secure effective counsel. Friedrich v. Dane County Circuit Court, 192 Wis. 2d 1
, 531 N.W.2d 32
Guardian ad litem for persons not in being or unascertainable.
In any action or proceeding the court may appoint a guardian ad litem for persons not in being or presently unascertainable, if the court has reason to believe that such appointment is necessary to protect the interests of such persons.
Sup. Ct. Order, 50 Wis. 2d vii (1971); 1977 c. 187
; Stats. 1977 s. 757.52; 1985 a. 29
s. 3202 (23)
; 1993 a. 326
Comment of Judicial Council, 1971: Guardian ad litem for unborn child. (Clarification) [Re Order effective July 1, 1971]
Retention and disposal of court records. 757.54(1)(1)
Except as provided in sub. (2)
, the retention and disposal of all court records and exhibits in any civil or criminal action or proceeding or probate proceeding of any nature in a court of record shall be determined by the supreme court by rule.
Except as provided in par. (c)
, if an exhibit in a criminal action or a delinquency proceeding under ch. 938
includes any biological material that was collected in connection with the action or proceeding and that is either from a victim of the offense that was the subject of the action or proceeding or may reasonably be used to incriminate or exculpate any person for the offense, the court presiding over the action or proceeding shall ensure that the exhibit is retained until every person in custody as a result of the action or proceeding, or as a result of commitment under s. 980.06
that is based on a judgment of guilty or not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect in the action or proceeding, has reached his or her discharge date.
The court shall ensure that an exhibit to which par. (b)
applies is retained in an amount and manner sufficient to develop a deoxyribonucleic acid profile, as defined in s. 939.74 (2d) (a)
, from the biological material contained in or included on the exhibit.
Subject to par. (e)
, the court may destroy an exhibit that includes biological material before the expiration of the time period specified in par. (b)
if all of the following apply:
The court sends a notice of its intent to destroy the exhibit to all persons who remain in custody as a result of the criminal action, delinquency proceeding, or commitment under s. 980.06
and to either the attorney of record for each person in custody or the state public defender.
No person who is notified under subd. 1.
does either of the following within 90 days after the date on which the person received the notice:
Submits a written request for retention of the exhibit to the court.
No other provision of federal or state law requires retention of the exhibit.
A notice provided under par. (c) 1.
shall clearly inform the recipient that the exhibit will be destroyed unless, within 90 days after the date on which the person receives the notice, either a motion for testing of the exhibit is filed under s. 974.07 (2)
or a written request for retention of the exhibit is submitted to the court.
If, after providing notice under par. (c) 1.
of its intent to destroy an exhibit, a court receives a written request for retention of the exhibit, the court shall ensure that the exhibit is retained until the discharge date of the person who made the request or on whose behalf the request was made, subject to a court order issued under s. 974.07 (7)
, (9) (a)
, or (10) (a) 5.
, unless the court orders destruction or transfer of the exhibit under s. 974.07 (9) (b)
or (10) (a) 5.
Sup. Ct. Order, 136 Wis. 2d xi (1987); 2001 a. 16
; 2005 a. 60
The supreme court shall determine, by rule, the civil and criminal actions and proceedings which shall be reported.
History: 1981 c. 353
In any criminal action or proceeding the court may order, and when required by s. 973.08
the court shall order, a transcript of the testimony and proceedings to be made and certified by a court reporter and filed with the clerk of court. Certified duplicates of transcripts prepared in compliance with s. 973.08
shall be filed with the warden or superintendent of the institution to which sentenced persons have been committed. The cost of the transcript is prescribed in s. 814.69 (1)
. In case of application for a pardon or commutation of sentence the duplicate transcript shall accompany the application.
Except as provided in SCR 71.04
(4), every court reporter, upon the request of any party to an action or proceeding, shall make a typewritten transcript, and as many copies thereof as the party requests, of the verbatim record in the action or proceeding, or any part thereof specified by the party, the transcript and each copy thereof to be duly certified by him or her to be a correct transcript thereof. For the transcripts the court reporter is entitled to receive the fees prescribed in s. 814.69 (1) (b)
History: 1977 c. 187
; Stats. 1977 s. 757.57; 1979 c. 32
s. 92 (4)
; Sup. Ct. Order, eff. 1-1-80; 1981 c. 317
; 1987 a. 403
; 1995 a. 27
; 2001 a. 16
; Sup. Ct. Order No. 19-01
, 2019 WI 44, 386 Wis. 2d xvii.
Effective date note
This section was repealed by Sup. Ct. Order dated 12-11-79, eff. 1-1-80. Subsequent legislative acts repealed and recreated subs. (2) and (5) and repealed subs. (3), (7), and (8). See SCR ch. 71
Judicial administrative districts.
The state is divided into judicial administrative districts for the purpose of administering the court system. Each district includes all the circuit courts within the district. The judicial administrative districts are as follows:
The 1st district consists of Milwaukee County.
The 2nd district consists of Kenosha, Racine and Walworth counties.
The 3rd district consists of Dodge, Jefferson, Ozaukee, Washington, and Waukesha counties.
The 4th district consists of Calumet, Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Manitowoc, Marquette, Sheboygan, Waushara, and Winnebago counties.
The 5th district consists of Columbia, Dane, Green, Lafayette, Rock, and Sauk counties.
The 7th district consists of Adams, Buffalo, Clark, Crawford, Grant, Iowa, Jackson, Juneau, La Crosse, Monroe, Pepin, Pierce, Richland, Trempealeau, and Vernon counties.
The 8th district consists of Brown, Door, Kewaunee, Marinette, Oconto, Outagamie and Waupaca counties.
The 9th district consists of Florence, Forest, Langlade, Lincoln, Marathon, Menominee, Oneida, Portage, Price, Shawano, Taylor, Vilas, and Wood counties.
The 10th district consists of Ashland, Barron, Bayfield, Burnett, Chippewa, Douglas, Dunn, Eau Claire, Iron, Polk, Rusk, St. Croix, Sawyer, and Washburn counties.
History: 1977 c. 449
; Sup. Ct. Order, 84 Wis. 2d xiii (1978); Sup. Ct. Order, eff. 1-1-80; 1981 c. 317
; 1995 a. 225
; Sup. Ct. Order No. 18-01
, 2018 WI 33, 380 Wis. 2d xiii; Sup. Ct. Order No. 19-21
, 2020 WI 17, 390 Wis. 2d xvii.
Recovery of legal fees paid for indigent defendants.
Whenever a county or the state has paid for legal representation of an indigent defendant and the county board or the department of justice so requires, the clerk of the court where representation for the indigent was appointed shall prepare, sign and record in the office of the register of deeds a certificate stating the name and residence of the indigent beneficiary, the amount paid by the county or the state for his or her legal representation, the date when paid, the court and county in which the case was heard and such other information as the county board directs. If a certificate is recorded within 6 months after payment is made by the county or the state it may, within the time after the recording provided by s. 893.86
, commence an action to recover from the indigent defendant, or his or her estate if the action is commenced within the time set for filing claims by creditors, the amount paid by the county or the state for his or her legal representation. In any such action ss. 859.02
, so far as applicable, may be pleaded in defense. The claim shall not take precedence over the allowances in ss. 861.31
. The district attorney or the department of justice, as applicable, shall commence and prosecute all actions and proceedings necessary under this section to make the recovery when it appears that the indigent defendant or his or her estate is able to pay the claim.
Recovery of legal defense fees from indigent defendants is discussed. James v. Strange, 407 U.S. 128
Not Poor Enough: Why Wisconsin's System for Providing Indigent Defense is Failing. Velazquez-Aguilu. 2006 WLR 193.
Testimony of judge of kin to attorney.
No judge of any court of record shall testify as to any matter of opinion in any action or proceeding in which any person related to such judge in the first degree shall be an attorney of record.
Sup. Ct. Order, 59 Wis. 2d R1, R4 s. 6 (1973); Stats. 1973 s. 256.67; 1977 c. 187
; Stats. 1977 s. 757.67.
Supplemental court commissioners. 757.675(1)(1)
In each county the circuit judges shall appoint such number of supplemental court commissioners as the proper transaction of business requires, except that in counties having a population of 200,000 or more each judge may appoint not more than 2 supplemental court commissioners and in counties having a population of less than 200,000 each judge shall, as nearly as possible, appoint an equal number of supplemental court commissioners within the county. In all counties the appointments shall be subject to the approval of a majority of the circuit judges for the county. Appointments shall be in writing and shall be filed in the office of the clerk of the circuit court. All supplemental court commissioners appointed after May 16, 1978, shall be attorneys licensed to practice in this state. The appointing judge may remove, at will and without cause, any supplemental court commissioner appointed by the judge or the judge's predecessor in office. Unless he or she is so removed, the term of each supplemental court commissioner shall continue until the expiration of the term of the appointing judge and until the successor of the commissioner is appointed and qualified. Each supplemental court commissioner shall take and file the official oath in the office of clerk of the circuit court of the county for which appointed before performing any duty of the office.
Supplemental court commissioners may, under their own authority:
Officiate at marriage ceremonies throughout the state.
Issue subpoenas and attachments or other process to compel the attendance of witnesses, administer oaths and affidavits, take depositions and testimony when authorized by law or rule or order, and certify and report the depositions and testimony.
Issue the following writs returnable before a judge at a time set by the judge or the judge's clerk: habeas corpus; certiorari; ne exeat and alternative writs of mandamus.
Supervise accountings subsequent to a sale of land under ch. 75
Except as provided in s. 757.69 (1) (p) 3.
, conduct a paternity proceeding according to the procedures set out in ch. 767
whenever a circuit court commissioner is specifically authorized to do so.
Conduct supplementary hearings on the present financial status of a debtor and exercise the powers of the court under ss. 816.04
In addition to the duties expressly set forth in sub. (2) (a)
, a supplemental court commissioner may perform other ministerial duties as required by a court.
A supplemental court commissioner may transfer to a court any matter in which it appears that justice would be better served by such a transfer.
A supplemental court commissioner shall refer to a court of record for appropriate action every alleged showing of contempt in the carrying out of the lawful decisions of the supplemental court commissioner.
Supplemental court commissioners appointed under sub. (1)
shall collect the fees prescribed in s. 814.68 (1)
History: 2001 a. 61
Circuit court commissioners. 757.68(1)(1)
Subject to subs. (2m)
, in every county organized for judicial purposes, the county board shall establish the number of circuit court commissioner positions necessary for the efficient administration of judicial business within the circuit courts of the county. The circuit court commissioners may be employed on a full-time or part-time basis. SCR chapter 75
shall govern the qualifications for, and appointment, supervision, training, evaluation, and discipline of, circuit court commissioners. Any person qualified and acting as a judicial court commissioner on August 1, 1978, shall be considered a circuit court commissioner and shall continue in the classified county civil service but any person appointed as a court commissioner after August 1, 1978, shall be in the unclassified civil service. Each circuit court commissioner shall take and file the official oath in the office of the clerk of the circuit court of the county for which appointed before performing any duty of the office.